An obese couple claims that they have been banned by their local taxi firm. Allegedly, the taxi service told the boyfriend that he had broken the suspension of two vehicles they sent for him.
Marcus Edwards and his girlfriend Taylor Faulkner used the cab service, sometimes up to four times a day, to travel back and forth to his mother's residence which is about a mile away from his.
Marcus weighs 36 stone and Taylor weighs in at 19 stone, reported The Sun.
Everything seemed hunky dory before the couple rang the service for a pickup back home and the operator denied them access, urging them to try another company as "there were no vehicles available" at the time.
Edwards' girlfriend Taylor called the company hotline once again furiously, demanding an explanation. She claims that she was told by Centrex Cars in Hodge Hill, Birmingham, that her 29-year-old boyfriend was banned from their services.
According to the conversation Taylor had with the car company, they explained that Marcus' weight had damaged the suspension on two carriers, one being a Volkswagen Touran, as claimed by two drivers who work for the firm.
As of now, the outraged couple is accusing Centrex Cars of “discrimination against larger people.” They are demanding that the ban must be revoked.
Marcus suffers from cellulitis on both legs, clots in his lung and heart, body fluid problems, and is registered obese. He said: “I have been a loyal customer of the firm for years spending up to £20 a day and now they have kicked me in the teeth.
“Because of my size, I always book a five-seater for Taylor and myself. She sits in the front and I have to spread across three seats in the back. There has never been a problem but when we rang for a lift back from my mum Sharon’s house on Tuesday they said there were no vehicles available all night and to try someone else.
“We found that odd, then when Taylor rang to query it the following day she was told two drivers had said I had damaged their suspensions and I was banned from now on because of my weight. I am obese because of my medical problems but this is discrimination against larger people like me pure and simple. I don’t believe I have knackered two cars' suspensions but I think they just don’t want a person of my size around them.
“They should realize I suffer from a disease called obesity. After all the money we have spent with them they should be ashamed.”
On the other hand, Taylor suffers from epilepsy, due to which her body is overweight. She asserts that companies make exceptions for Marcus' health condition.
An airline awarded Marcus three flight seats to travel to Fuerteventura, where the pair ultimately went for a holiday.
Speaking of the taxi dispute, Taylor says: “I rang the booking office to find out why there had been a problem getting a car the night before and I was stunned when a man who said he was a manager said we were banned from their cars from now on because Marcus had broken the suspensions of two of their vehicles.
“I was flabbergasted and told him he must be joking. But he was adamant and told us to use another cab company in future. I argued with him that they use their people carriers for airport runs full of people and suitcases so how could they blame the mechanical problems on Marcus."
“A family group and their luggage would weigh much more than Marcus and the damaged cars could simply have banged over potholes. Marcus always has to sit on three seats and there has been no trouble in the past and we are amongst their best customers.
“We are both angry and upset with their attitude. We think they are persecuting us because we are overweight. But we can’t help it. It’s not that we eat and drink too much.”
She added: "I do all our home cooked, healthy meals and we might treat ourselves to a takeaway just once a month. I don’t drink alcohol because of my condition and Marcus will only have a drink on special occasions.”
A spokesman for Centrex Cars said: "It is wrong to say we banned him but the simple fact is we just do not have a car available that is big enough for him. He has got larger.
“One of the drivers did complain there had been a problem with his suspension but we have only refused this customer because we don’t have a vehicle large enough that suits his needs at the moment.”